Archive for “September, 2016”

CORE Continues to Reach GRC Milestones in Seattle

SEATTLE, Wash. (Sept. 19, 2016) – Driver Jon Bennett achieved a personal best finish of seventh at Red Bull Global Rallycross Seattle. Newcomer Scott Anderson started the weekend strong with a third-place finish in his first heat race, but was unable to make the final.


Under gorgeous conditions on Friday, Anderson qualified his No. 56 GRC Lites entry ninth and converted that into a third-place finish in the first heat race. Bennett qualified the No. 54 in 11th, but an opening lap accident in the first heat race resulted in a DNF.


Saturday brought not only a reversal of weather conditions, but a reversal of fortunes for the CORE autosport drivers. The skies turned gray and rain wet down the circuit at Evergreen Speedway. Contact in the second heat slowed Anderson to a fourth-place finish. Bennett also finish fourth in his second heat, so both CORE drivers faced the Last Change Qualifier (LCQ).


Starting from the pole in the LCQ, Anderson got nudged into the wall in Turn One, which broke the car’s suspension and ended his race. Bennett ended up third in the LCQ and successfully transferred to the final.


Bennett deftly avoided an opening lap incident in the mud and was able to cross the finish line in seventh; his best GRC finish to-date.


“It is great to have Scott on team and we are impressed with his adaptation to GRC,” CORE autosport GRC Program Manger Brian Colangelo said. “Jon was able to help Scott come up to speed quickly during our test before the Seattle event.


“We are off testing again immediately after Seattle with no time to spare. The crew has done its usual fantastic job of turning the cars around quickly after an extremely eventful Seattle race in preparation for the test. We are looking forward to the Los Angeles finale and hope to finish strong there with the momentum we are building and what we are learning with our testing.”


The GRC season finale is approaching quickly. A doubleheader in Los Angeles, California, takes place October 8 – 9.



16-CORE-JB-HeadshotGRC“In Seattle we had a GRC circuit built into a permanent short-track oval. The venue was nice and the track was really well laid out. I enjoyed having Scott Anderson for a teammate for the first time and watching him get acclimated and learn the flow of a GRC event.


“In the first heat race, I had a killer start. I went from P6 to P2 heading into the first turn. Using my road racing background I was able to brake deeper into the corner than the leader. I crept into his blind spot, we collided and our wheels locked, which got my car a bit on top of his car. The CORE guys had the car fixed in a few hours.


“I enjoyed the wet conditions on Saturday. I think my background and the rain racing I’ve done is an advantage over the younger drivers in this series who are still learning how a car’s personality changes in the wet.


“I finished third in the LCQ and went on to finish seventh in the final. I was hoping for a podium, but for the moment that is my personal best. It’s nice to see the progression and I think my first podium isn’t far off.”
– Jon Bennett



16-core-grc-mailchimp-anderson“GRC is a whole different animal from what I’m used to, more often than not I’m finding I need to forget what I’ve learned in open-wheel racing and start from scratch when it comes to adjusting to new techniques. I love the racing though, it’s extremely intense with so many variables being thrown at you. I think I’m addicted.


“The hardest thing to adjust to is knowing the limits of what you can pull off with AWD in dirt. You can recover from some big slides and demand a lot more out of the car than I would have thought, I still think there’s a ton of potential I haven’t found yet.


“In my second heat I had some contact that knocked the steering out of alignment, so it wouldn’t turn left well.  We still came away fourth but needed a third to transfer straight to the final.


“In the LCQ I was on the inside of three cars going into Turn One and got turned into, which sent me into the inside wall. It broke the suspension and our day ended there.
– Scott Anderson

Porsche Finishes 1-2 in Texas Heat

AUSTIN, Texas (Sept. 17, 2016) – At the Circuit of the Americas in Austin, Earl Bamber (New Zealand) and Frédéric Makowiecki (France) won the penultimate GTLM race of the IMSA SportsCar Championship with the Porsche 911 RSR fielded by the Porsche North America works team. With five manufacturers, this category is the most hotly contested. Their teammates Patrick Pilet (France) and Nick Tandy (Great Britain) clinched second with the 470hp winning racer from Weissach, which is based on the seventh generation of the iconic 911 sports car. After Long Beach, this is the second win this season for the 911 RSR in the USA.

In temperatures reaching 95 degrees, Pilet got the best start on the 3.4-mile circuit in the hills near the Texas capital. At the wheel of the No. 911 Porsche 911 RSR, the defending IMSA GT champion snatched one position in the first lap and slotted into second place behind the leading Ferrari. Making the most of his slipstream, Frédéric Makowiecki (No. 912) also swept past the rival. These three then proceeded to pull clear of their pursuers, putting both 911 race cars on course for podium results shortly after the start.

At the first pit stop, Tandy took over driving duties from Pilet, with whom he had won the Long Beach race earlier this season. On the 27th lap, he moved into the lead of the GTLM field. In the second 911 RSR, Bamber maintained third place. In lap 35, the Ferrari again took the lead, but the 911 RSR kept the frontrunner under heavy pressure. With 25 minutes left in the two-hour and 40-minute race, the Ferrari had to make an unscheduled pit stop, thus handing the lead at the hottest race of the year to Porsche. In the final phase, Bamber overtook his leading teammate and secured the first win of the season for he and Makowiecki in the most important sports car championship on the North American continent.
Dr Frank-Steffen Walliser, Head of Porsche Motorsport: “That was an incredibly exciting race: a heated battle in which the tires played a major role. We profited somewhat from Ferrari’s bad luck, but we then drove a clean race to the flag. All in all it was a great performance from the drivers and teams under difficult conditions. I’m very pleased.”
Patrick Pilet (911 RSR No. 911): “A fantastic success for Porsche. I got away well off the line and passed the Ford. After that the race ran problem-free. Our car has proven hugely consistent over the entire season. We were able to successfully utilize the strength of the 911 RSR under these extreme conditions.”
Nick Tandy (911 RSR No. 911): “This race was perfect for Porsche. With the exception of the Ferrari we could control the whole field. I’m also delighted for our teammates in the 912. They really deserve this win. For us it was great to be back on the podium.”
Earl Bamber (911 RSR No. 912): “This victory belongs to the entire team. We saw today that the 911 RSR was the most consistent car over the distance under such extreme conditions. First and second place – a great success for Porsche.”
Frédéric Makowiecki (911 RSR No. 912): “We didn’t necessarily have the fastest car today, but we could maintain a decent pace over the entire race distance. We’ve been working towards this win over the whole season. Finally everything came together. This is precisely the motivation we need heading to the season finale at Road Atlanta.”

The eleventh and final round of the IMSA SportsCar Championship will be contested on October 1st on the storied Road Atlanta

CORE Heads to GRC Seattle with New Driver

ROCK HILL, S.C. (Sept. 14, 2016) – CORE autosport will participate in the latest Red Bull Global Rallycross round in Seattle with an adjustment to its driver lineup. Scott Anderson will join Jon Bennett in the team’s pair of GRC Lites cars at Evergreen Raceway.


For its fourth GRC Lites event, CORE welcomes rookie Scott Anderson to the team. The 26 year-old is making his GRC debut, but comes into the series with a strong open-wheel background. Since 2011 he has raced in the Skip Barber National Championship, USF2000, Pro Mazda Championship and Indy Lights.


Bennett will continue to drive the No. 54 in Seattle. Anderson has signed on to drive the No. 56 car at Seattle and the finale in Los Angeles.


Similar to the Daytona International Speedway layout, the 0.791-mile Seattle course incorporates the banked oval of Evergreen Speedway as well as the dirt infield. Its Joker Lap allows drivers to skip half of the dirt section, including the jump.


The GRC Lites race from Seattle will be shown on Red Bull TV Sunday, Sept. 18 at 2pm ET. The race will air on NBC Sports Network, Thursday, Sept. 22, at 5:30pm ET.



16-CORE-JB-HeadshotGRC“One of the challenges of a GRC event is the uniqueness of each circuit. Each circuit requires strategic thinking to unlock the speed. Predicting the grip level and speed on a section of purpose-built racing surface should be familiar for us.


“It is difficult to determine how much previous experience at our recent GRC rounds will help us in Seattle. The course map gives us an idea of what is ahead, but walking the final course is the key to understanding the circuit.  Additionally, there are often small changes to the course to accommodate nuances of the actual venue.


“Considering this will be my fourth GRC event, making The Final is an important goal for me.  While I respect the quality of the GRC Lites field, I believe a podium finish in my inaugural season is achievable.”




“I’ve wanted to try out some kind of rally racing since I first started racing. GRC seems like a perfect mix of both the side-by-side racing I’m used to and the unpredictable, extreme elements that got me interested in rally in the first place. I think GRC is going to be the next big series.


“I found CORE through my sponsor Hull & Knarr. We had been looking at getting into GRC and knew CORE was getting involved. Hull & Knarr was able to provide their services to both CORE and their partners, so it’s a natural fit.


“Besides sliding around in the snow in my street car, I have basically no rally experience. I just finished my second day of testing in the GRC lites car, so I think that should be enough to know what I’m doing during the race weekend, but there’s plenty to learn still.


“I’d like to thank Hull & Knarr for their huge support and making this happen and Evil Bikes for their support as well. I think they have a big future in the GRC paddock, it’s not even the race weekend yet and I’m getting people telling me how cool it is to have them in GRC.”
– Scott Anderson

CORE Moves to GTD With Porsche in 2017

ROCK HILL, S.C. (Sept. 12, 2016) – Five-time IMSA Prototype Challenge Champions CORE autosport will move to the GT Daytona class for the 2017 WeatherTech SportsCar Championship with a Porsche 911 GT3 R.


Knowing the PC class will be eliminated from the WeatherTech Championship in 2018, CORE evaluated multiple options for the future of its sports car program. Ultimately, the team decided that a switch to the GTD class in a Porsche 911 GT3 R made the most sense.


The switch from PC to GTD means CORE will continue to compete in a pro-am class. The choice of Porsche was a natural fit considering CORE’s history of running a customer Porsche entry in 2013, team owner/driver Jon Bennett’s experience in the 2013 Porsche GT3 Cup Challenge, and CORE’s multi-year partnership with Porsche to run the German marque’s factory GTLM program.


“The move to GTD evolved pretty naturally,” Bennett said. “We knew we wanted to compete at a pro-am level. The competition in GTD is incredible and we’ve had a relationship with Porsche for four years now, so the 911 GT3 R stood out as a smart choice. As a Porsche owner myself, I’m really excited about the opportunity to team up with Colin Braun and race one.”


CORE has already begun its preparations for its 2017 GTD debut, and as a result it has elected to withdraw its No. 54 Flex-Box/Composite Resources ORECA FLM09 from the remaining IMSA rounds at Circuit of the Americas and Road Atlanta.


“At CORE, we place a high value on preparation, and I don’t think we can go into 2017 as prepared as we need to be if we’re distracted by the final two PC rounds,” CORE autosport COO Morgan Brady said. “The first IMSA-sanctioned test at Daytona is only two months away and the 2017 season kicks off with a 24-hour race; we can’t be tying up loose ends when the green flag drops.”


CORE’s PC program concludes with five-straight team titles (2011 – 2015), four driver titles (2011, 2012, 2014, 2015), 16 pole positions and 20 class wins. The team is currently third in the 2016 PC Team points. Bennett and Braun are fourth in the PC Driver points.


Without a PC entry at Circuit of the Americas, Bennett will travel to Seattle, Washington, this weekend to compete in the latest Red Bull Global Rallycross event at Evergreen Speedway.